Ian Johnson – our living legend

Ian Johnson is the oldest member of the Bendigo Orienteering Club. His 88th birthday comes up in August 2016 and the club will celebrate the occasion at his micro-sprint event at Black Jack Gully near Castlemaine on August 13th. Ian still competes in events although he is now slowing down a bit, but he still enjoys the bush and finding hidden controls. I wonder how many people reading this will still be able to navigate their way around the Bendigo bush when they are 88 years old.

Ian retired from primary teaching in 1986, and came to live near Castlemaine, so it could be said that in 1986 the Ballarat orienteering world lost an asset and Bendigo gained one. At 88 he is still heavily involved in the sport; orienteering is a sport for all ages but the balance is still very much weighted in favour of the younger and fitter, and to see an 88 year old navigating his way around the rough forest areas week after week is still a bit off putting for many people. He has competed in almost every event organised by the Bendigo club since his arrival here but now, though still active competitively he is easing out of the organisational activities.

Ian first ventured into orienteering on a novice course at an event in 1971 at St George’s Lake in the Creswick Forest. Ian said he walked or scrambled it, as he went across country where he could, but did not use a compass. He can remember that the controls were buckets hanging by a rope with pens of different colours to mark the spaces on the map. He mapped the forest behind his newly built home in Ballarat and when some local runners were thinking about starting an orienteering club, he became an original member, taking on the position of Treasurer with a strict spending oversight. Tom Norwood and Ian both agreed low spending was essential to start with, and they gathered the profits carefully. The first event Ian organised was on June 1st 1975 on a map he helped to field work and draw. The longest course was 3.75 km with 13 controls. The cost of entry was only 20 cents, and compass hire the same.

With the experience of these initial ventures into orienteering behind him, Ian decided to make a better coloured map with more accurate fieldwork, using his usual three point triangulation, which is labour intensive but very accurate. Another map of Canadian Forest followed, it was bigger and more complicated, but still accurate. His map making procedure is, even now, still firmly rooted in basic, original methods with little time for new technology. Ian managed to make some more maps from some free photogrammetry he got from an International Three Day event. Today he still makes his own maps using free hand, pacing and drawings – then passes them on to others to digitally prepare the final map. During his time at Bendigo he has never missed course setting at least one — until recently two events every year and still continues to compete every week.

He is an avid environmentalist and his knowledge of indigenous plants is second to none; he has written numerous volumes on his observations of micro climate and vegetation changes and is also the author of many, many articles on navigational techniques as used in orienteering; his property at Harcourt is not connected to electricity and he lives a Spartan and totally carbon neutral lifestyle.

Ian Johnson is an amazing person, he is iconic to our sport– a “living legend” of the Bendigo Orienteering Club and an individual the like of whom we will probably never see again.

Peter Creely, based on observations by John Wilkinson and Colin Walker.

We will celebrate Ian’s birthday at the event that he will course set at Black Dog Gully in Harcourt on 13 August this year. The occasion will be much more social this year with a BBQ and food supplied by the club. As in past years Jenny Ball will make Ian’s birthday cake and all are invited to stay and celebrate Ian’s birthday in the company of other club members.

ian johnson

Night Orienteering in Bendigo!

This coming Saturday we have a special event in the evening, for you to come and enjoy orienteering in twilight or night conditions. People who attended last year’s inaugural night champs event loved it and raved about how well organised it was and how much fun they had.

This is a brilliant opportunity to come and navigate in the twilight or in the dark, knowing there are other people nearby doing the same thing. It will help improve your navigation skills and is great for development. Course 1 and 2 are a mass start event at 5:35 and pre entry is required. Course 3-5 are run as normal with starts between 4:45 to 5:30 so you get to pick how dark you want it to be. Pre entry for these courses is still preferable.

The sunset is due to happen at 5:31pm and there will be a fire to keep everyone nice and warm as well. More details and pre-entry on Eventor. The deadline for pre-enty has been moved to midday on Friday. If you have a spare headlamp with strong light that you don’t mind lending to someone else, please bring it along. Christpher Naunton (our organser) has had some requests.

There is $50 for the winning male and female on course 1 for the night event Saturday night.

night champs

Browns Reef event report

On a cold but fine Saturday, Bendigo Bush 16 got off to a slightly delayed, but fox free start. The Brown’s Reef map is mostly open bush and offers some fast gully and spur orienteering terrain. Course 1 and 2 were relatively long (7.9 km and 6.0 km) and provided some interesting route choices for runners. Course 1 was won by Ben Goonan from Peter Hobbs and David Brownridge with all three averaging better than 6 minutes/km. Course 2 was the most popular course and Chris Naunton led Jimmy Cameron home with both runners averaging better than 6 minutes/km. Lian Perry from Eureka Orienteers won course 3 from local Bendigo runner, Rueben Cameron. Archie Neylon and Eleanor Williams both performed well to win courses 4 and 5. Thanks to Andrew Wallace for setting up the computer system on the day, Neil Barr for assistance with course setting and all helpers who assisted by picking up the controls.

Rob Clark

RESULTS
LIVELOX

Hills Upsan Downs

Bendigo’s MTBO event on the 3rd July started at our house in Castlemaine. Competitors had to ride 1km to get to the start but it offered a flat ride for those who did the scatter event with lots of great single track riding. Other courses traveled north over the Castlemaine Muckleford Rd that was used the week before for the Interwinter series between 4 local mountain bike clubs. The terrain north was very hilly with lots of single tracks offering a lot of route choice .

The new SI system worked well and the results were displayed on a screen back at our house as well as coffee and tea to warm everyone after the event. We had a competitor from Sydney that had come to do the double header for the weekend as they love the mountain biking that Victoria offers .

We had great help on the Sunday from Peter and Di Searle, John Chellew, Jason and Harrison Carter as well as Jim Russell who set up the results system and picking up controls .

Course Setter and Organiser: Peter & Judy Hill

Bendigo Bush 12: Longlea Forest

Friday’s cold and wet conditions gave way to a magnificent, sunny Saturday to greet the 62 eager competitors who ran in the flat and largely open terrain of Longlea Forest for Bendigo Orienteers’ 12th bush event of the year.

Participants came from far afield: Melbourne, Ballarat, Kyneton and Rochester, as well as many Bendigo locals. The flatness and openness could lead astray anyone who didn’t keep very good contact with their map. In spite of this, some very fast times were recorded.

On the courses with difficult navigation Ben Goonan won the 7.6 km Course 1, followed by Simon Rouse and Belinda Lawford. Ben clocked up an impressive km rate of 4. minutes. Course 2 was won by Chris Naunton, followed by Andrew Cameron and Nic Cherry while Peter Hill, Jacqui Knee and young Serryn Eenjes took the placings on Course 3.

The Moderate course was won by Richard Bills, followed by Jarrod Martin and Oliver Martin. Angus Martin took out Course 5.

Thanks to Neil Barr for help with the computers on the day and beforehand.

Course Setter and organiser: Charles Brownridge

Kooyoora Weekend

The Queen’s Birthday Weekend saw Yarra Valley Orienteers and Bendigo Orienteers host events 3 and 4 of this year’s state series at the renowned Mt. Kooyoora State Park. Yarra Valley set a series of middle distance courses on the Saturday and Andrew Cameron and Craig Feuerherdt set a series of long distance courses for the event hosted by Bendigo on Sunday. Congratulations must go to Andrew and Craig for their terrific courses that demanded a high level of skill from all competitors. Many thanks to Peter Searle for the very thorough job he did overseeing the course setting and guiding a novice organiser through many and varied hoops. I would also like to thank the club members who were very willing to pitch in and make the event a success.

Course 1 was just over 12km long with local runner Leon Keely coming home first in 1:48:28 in an average km time of 9 minutes exactly. This was an excellent performance in very tough and demanding terrain. Brodie Nankervis was next home 4 minutes later followed by Bruce Arthur and Patrick Jaffe, both just over the 2 hour mark. The tough nature of the terrain is shown by the fact that only half the field of 14 completed the course.

Sixteen runners started the 7.4 km M2 course with Warren Key winning comfortably in 1:14:34 from Dion Keech. Bendigo juniors Lachlan Cherry and Glenn James performed really well to come in 3rd and 4th in just under 2 hours. Natasha Key was first home in the W2 class over the 7.4 course in 1:25:26 followed closely by Aislinn Prendergast, with Lanita Steer in 3rd place. All 3 ran very competitive times.

David Colls from the Yarra Valley club was well ahead of his competition running the 6.1 km M3 course in 1:05:03 followed by Ted van Geldermalsen and Vic Sedunary. Local runner Clare Brownridge had an excellent run to win the W3 class from Carolyn Jackson and promising Bendigo junior Leisha Maggs.

The largest field of the day started in the M4 class and veteran Alex Tarr showed the benefit of experience in the tough terrain coming in ahead of locals Warwick Williams and Andrew Wallace. Alexandra Sinickas was first home in the 4.5 km long W4 class from Margi Freemantle and Pru Dobbin.

First home in the M5 class was Peter Prime from Greg Cates and Blake Gordon. A large field contested the W5 class with Sue Key leading in Kathryn Tarr and Dale Ann Gordon.

Ian Dodd beat a small field over the 2.1km M6 course with 2 locals Ralee Enjes and Caitlyn Steer coming first and second in the W6 category.

Mason Arthur and Serryn Enjes won the M7 and W7 classes, while Torren Arthur and Luca Bogdanovits had victories in the M8 and W8 classes. Luke Feuerherdt and Emma Cates both showed excellent speed to win the M9 and W9 classes in good time.

Results For Saturday are HERE Splits are HERE Win Splits are HERE.

Results For Sunday are HERE Splits are HERE Win Splits are HERE.

Next Bendigo event is at Mandurang.

Rob Clark, Organiser

And Finally

For those who competed at the recent event at Apollo Hills, here is a small article written by Don Cherry, that has been published on a American website

Kooyoora Report

Congratulations and thank you to the following Bendigo Orienteers who worked so hard to make Sunday’s State League event a success:

Andrew Cameron, who accepted the challenge of course setting in such a complex area as Kooyoora, for such as big event as a State League event. Andrew put many hours into this project.

Rob Clark, who took on the big job of organising the event. Rob had not done this previously, so was learning on the job, and essentially project managing an event.

Peter Searle, who supported Rob in organising and Andrew in course setting, and accepted the role of controller.

Craig Feuerherdt, who assisted Andrew with the finer aspects of course setting at Kooyoora.

Thank you to all club members who supported the event by taking on rostered roles. Without our collective volunteer efforts these events would not occur at all.

Also, Thank you to Alison and Tony Radford who controlled the event on Saturday for Yarra Valley club.

Kooyoora lived up to its reputation as one of the most complex and tough terrains in Australia. Congratulations to all participants who completed their courses – many of us either mispunched or did not finish, for various reasons.

Mosquito Creek Results 4.6.16

Derek Morris (today’s course setter) is becoming renowned for two things:

  • Great courses in the subtle complexity of Mosquito Creek.
  • Wet weather.

Both were present at today’s event. However, the rain was only light and intermittent after an overnight soaking, and did not deter more than 50 competitors who thoroughly enjoyed their courses.  Most people had difficulty negotiating “clean” runs as the subtle and often overgrown terrain was difficult to read.

Thanks to Derek for another great event.

Results are now available.

Coursesetter Musings

Reflections on Saturday’s event at Mt Tarrengower in Maldon

One of the things I like to achieve when planning orienteering courses is to give people a sense of adventure. The challenge is to set courses that provide the right level of adventure for people, and to try to make sure no one doing easy or moderate courses gets lost. About 100 people participated (official entries numbered 86) and maps were in short supply by 1pm. Most people appeared to enjoy their experience, but a few found the steep terrain more than they could manage. One or two jokingly reminded me of my old reputation of having ‘sadistic tendencies’ when planning courses.

I began checking out possible assembly areas and planning the easy and moderate courses several weeks ago before the rain when the mountain was very dry and there was no grass growing. It took a while to plan these courses; after all they are the most important courses to get right. One of the goals is to manage events so that young participants have little chance of getting lost. In the end 4 young people (one group of 3 girls and one single boy) had some difficulty with course 4 and that is a little disappointing for me as the person responsible. I was pleased with course 5, as all participants finished well. In retrospect, I think that course 4 was probably a little too challenging.

Among the highlights of the day was the wide age range of people participating. From the youngest participant, Akira Hill having an adventure with his Nonna on course 5, to Adolf Kempf, a 90 year old Swiss orienteer who impressively completed course 2. I suppose someone who is used to orienteering in Swiss mountain terrain would have no difficulty with Mt Tarrengower (probably just a hill to a Swiss orienteer).

I would like to thank Judy Hill for organising the afternoon tea/coffee/bikkies. Judy, Jacqui Knee and Alison Radford (members who live in Castlemaine) have decided they will support this opportunity for socialising. It encourages people to hang around and talk with others. At a recent planning meeting one of the positive changes some people want is more opportunities to socialise at orienteering events.

Thank you to the volunteers who helped to collect controls after the event: Derek Morris (next week’s organiser), Warwick and Elleanor Williams and Andrew Wallace.

Thanks Neil Barr for setting up the maps, organising the printing of maps, setting up the computer for the event AND putting all the controls out before the event. I spent the week prior to this event in Canberra assisting my ageing unwell parents. It’s great to have a support team to help make our events successful.

Finally, don’t miss Derek’s event next week on Mosquito Creek where the hills are not nearly as high and the gullies are not nearly as obvious.

Julie Flynn

RESULTS

Victorian Secondary Schools Champs

Do we have great potential in our Junior ranks in Bendigo?!
Here are some results from the Vic Secondary Schools Champs in Melbourne last Friday.
Girls 13B
Amber Holmberg (E’hawk Sec) 1st.
G14A
Serryn Eenjes 1st
Caitlyn Steer 2nd (11 seconds)
G14B
Megan Bramley (E’hawk Sec) 1st.
Taylor Mackieson (E’hawk Sec) 10
Georgie Hall (E’hawk Sec) 12th.
G15A
Karina Cherry 1st
Lily Begg 3rd.
Stephanie Trew (E’hawk Sec) 7th.
Sarah Maggs (E’hawk Sec) 8th.
Lian Jackson (E’hawk Sec) 10
Emily Brown (E’hawk Sec) 11th.
G15B
Gemma Holmberg (E’hawk Sec) 3rd.

Boys 13A
Solomon Cameron 2nd.
Boys 14A
Jack Wigney
Boys 16A
Glenn James 2nd.
Henry Cameron 3rd.
Michael Loughnan 5th.
Boys Open
Jimmy Cameron 1st.

Congratulations to everyone who competed!